The spectacular fall of Mr Ghosn and the speed at which Nissan chief executive Hiroto Saikawa turned on his mentor raised speculation by French and Japanese media of an orchestrated coup to remove him and set the stage for a looming power struggle between Nissan and Renault over control of the world's biggest auto alliance.
The executive, once feted for his turnaround of the struggling Nissan, has been removed as chairman of the carmaker as well as of Mitsubishi Motors.
In the interview with the Nikkei business daily, Mr Ghosn said he had wanted to include Mitsubishi Motor boss Osamu Masuko in the discussions about the future of the alliance, but Mr Saikawa "wanted it one-on-one".
Renault SA, Nissan Motor Co Ltd and Mitsubishi Motors Corp together sold 10.76 million passenger cars and light commercial vehicles in 2018, according to Reuters' calculations after new data released on January 30.
"People translated strong leadership to dictator, to distort reality" for the "purpose of getting rid of me", he said.
Mr Ghosn brushed off accusations that his tenure at the helm of Nissan was authoritarian and said it was a narrative propagated by those who sought to remove him from his position. The homes were no secret and if they had been a problem, he should have been consulted, Ghosn said.
"The sole cause of this chain of events is the misconduct led by Ghosn and Kelly", company spokesman Nicholas Maxfield said. Renault owns about 43 percent of Nissan with voting rights, while Nissan has a 15 percent non-voting stake in Renault.
He has also come under fire for luxury houses in Rio de Janeiro and Beirut - which Nissan alleges were paid for improperly via a subsidiary.
The allegations against Ghosn that emerged from the months long investigation at Nissan subsequently triggered a probe at Renault into the pay of its top executives.
While both companies repeatedly say they are committed to the partnership, Nissan has always been unhappy about what it considers to be an outsized French role in the alliance.
He justified these residences on the grounds that he "needed a safe place where (he) can work and receive people in both Brazil and Lebanon". Pointing to a former loyalist and long-time executive in the legal department, Ghosn said: "Hari Nada has done all this".
However, Ghosn said, "All the evidence is with Nissan", adding, "I won't flee, I will defend (myself)".
Ghosn's resignation from Renault brought to an end nearly two decades at the top of the carmaking industry.
"I don't understand why I am still being detained", he was quoted as saying, adding he could not tamper with evidence because "All the evidence is with Nissan".
Ghosn has been in custody since his November 19 arrest in Tokyo.
When asked about his health, he said he was "doing fine".